Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday Fun~ Disco Revisited


It's time to kick back and relax. It's Friday Fun time. TGIF, do you remember when that acronym came into being? It was a 1978 disco movie. I rented it for a blast from the past.

The time was 1978. The heyday of disco dancing, mirrored balls, Donna Summer and the Beegees topped the charts, the Vietnam War,Fantasy Island debuted on television, and the cost of a Super Bowl ad was $162,000.

Thank God It's Friday 
1978 
PG 
89 minutes
Genre:
Contemporary Movie Musicals, Disco, Music & Musicals, Comedy
Cast:
Donna Summer, Jeff Goldblum, Valerie Landsburg, Terri Nunn, Debra Winger, Chick Vennera, Ray Vitte, Commodores
It's Friday night and time to head to the hottest disco in town for the big dance contest in this 1970s groove-fest. A wild assortment of crazy characters shows up, and the Commodores supply the music. Singer Nicole (Donna Summer) is convinced she's going to get her big break, while Marv "Leather Man" Gomez (Chick Vennera) wanders the club dispensing advice. Thank God It's Friday won an Oscar and a Golden Globe for the song "Last Dance."

I watched this my children. One of whom I was pregnant with when this movie first hit the theaters. The script was still hopelessly hokey, but the music was fabulous. I still have the soundtrack on 8-track tape and a player to play it on. 

"Woman! Don't you throw anything away?" Hahaha, nope! Why should I? It still works! 

We followed that movie up with Saturday Night Fever.and had a disco marathon going.

Saturday Night Fever1977 
R
118 minutes
Genres:
Drama, Classic Dramas, Disco, Dance, Blockbusters
Cast:
John Travolta, Karen Lynn Gorney, Barry Miller, Joseph Cali, Paul Pape, Donna Pescow, Bruce Ornstein, Julie Bovasso, Fran Drescher, Martin Shakar, Sam Coppola
Director John Badham's musical ushered in the disco craze with the character of 19-year-old Tony Manero (John Travolta). By day, Tony's a paint store clerk, but at night he's a polyester-clad stallion who rules a Brooklyn nightspot with his partner, Stephanie (Karen Lynn Gorney). Although the plot addresses socioeconomic themes, it's the Bee Gees soundtrack and Travolta's strutting, Oscar-nominated moves that have made the film iconic.

After dinner, the grandchildren wanted to try their feet to some of the dance moves they had seen. We have the 8-track of both movies so we couldn't resist playing them while they practiced. Now my husband and I are old disco dancing pros because we lived the era. My husband broke out his wide collared polyester shirts and pants and I put on one of my floaty polyester dresses, and we set up shop as instructors. Well sort of, neither of us can do all the moves like when we were much younger.

We had an impromptu dance competition going with even one-year old James getting into the act. He could shake his booty with the rest of them. Our #2 grandson and #1 granddaughter had the best moves as a couple, while our #4 grandson had the best John Travolta disco stance shown above in the movie cover.

Great fun was had be all. So much for the blast from the past. All together now we are doing the boxcar. Er, um the disco line dance. Er, um the electric slide. Oh heck, every generation has a version.



12 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Goldblum was in that movie? He must've been really young.

J.L. Murphey said...

He was.

Zan Marie said...

Oh, goodness--the memories, the pain. ; ) I didn't like the music being a devoted follower of the Beatles and Simon and Garfunkel. The only problem was they weren't doing new stuff, but I could relisten to my heart's content. ; )

J.L. Murphey said...

My God, the flowy polyester skirts and leisure suits...rayon really hit their stride then. The six inch high platform shoes which made you feel like a tight rope walker. Yes, the memories.

I sort of strayed away from the Beatles in the 70s. Their music took on the aspects of the drugs they were taking. Now S&G, they are still my favs. But my ultimate was the orchestrations of Chicago.

Nick Wilford said...

Your house sounds like fun. I only know TGI Friday as a restaurant, but I don't doubt it makes for a fun watch.

J.L. Murphey said...

My house is never boring. There is always something going on. The only know of TGI Friday restaurant by their commercials and the frozen foods aisle in the grocery store. We don't have one here.

DL Hammons said...

Saturday Night Fever was really a hard core film, but it got such a fluff rep because it was dubbed a disco film. Shame. :)

J.L. Murphey said...

So true DL

Gina Gao said...

I loved Saturday Night Fever! These are great choices for movies.

www.modernworld4.blogspot.com

J.L. Murphey said...

Gina,
Welcome! It was perfect for my disco night.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

HI JL .. sounds like a blast for all .. especially the grandkids - they'll remember the time for many a year - and you'all be laughing away at the funny moves and fun times!

Sounds just glorious .. and just what a family should be on a TGIF night, especially with the film moves in the background ..

Fun - I've never seen the movie - but who can resist the music!! Cheers Hilary

J.L. Murphey said...

Hilary,
Having both parents working and taking graduate study class work, and having five kids there wasn't much time or money to do much. The weekends, we set on night as family night and the other for my husband and me to have a date night.

It only seemed natural to continue this practice once we had grandkids. It's a way we all stay connected.